Frugality is often misunderstood and deemed to be about penny pinching. A far better way to appreciate the benefits of frugal habits is to challenge the ways in which money is wasted unnecessarily to profit a third party at your expense. Whilst there are many ways to adopt frugal habits in day to day living, these can often pale into insignificance compared to the habits already formed and adhered to by simply accepting traditional ways of dealing with money.
Frugal habits can involve looking towards long term gains to save money. Simply by reducing the term of your mortgage or overpaying the monthly amount, massive savings in unnecessary interest payments can be made. This offers the additional advantage of clearing your largest monthly debt early and owning your home outright sooner than anticipated.
In a similar way clearing down all personal loans, car loans, credit card balances and other outstanding debt, offers the biggest savings. In order to find the necessary sums to do this then frugal habits can pay off.
Firstly a financial review is recommended to cut out areas of spending that are no longer necessary. Whilst once it may have been the norm to pay banking fees, these can now be curtailed by opting for fee free banking and accounts that automatically offer ATM surcharge rebates. Utilize the cash back facility on offer with debit cards as you shop, espousing completely the habit of relying on credit card cash advances. Use cash back credit cards and enjoy the pleasure of receiving cash from the bank instead of paying fees to bankers to run an account.
Comparison shop between rates on insurance polices and utilities. Cutting back on home energy usage can offer significant savings in areas where money is wasted. Give up wasteful energy use and show off your green credentials by ditching the tumble dryer in favor of washing lines, and consider solar panels for heating water or the home. If money is wasted on home entertainment packages, then switch to the internet for big savings. It is entirely feasible to hook up the internet to a large screen to watch online news channels, documentaries and films.
Trading down to a smaller less gas guzzling vehicle can reap dividends in lower auto taxes and insurance premiums, in addition to costing less to fill up at the pumps. Utilize public transport, car pool, walk or bicycle around to not only save costs but to promote a healthier lifestyle.
Naturally one of the biggest areas of day to day spending is made on food purchases. Again the benefits of a healthy lifestyle can be realized by switching from processed and convenience foods to cooking natural healthy produce. Shopping for fruit and vegetables at the market instead of the supermarket offers a superlative choice of fresh seasonal produce at a fraction of the price. Bulk cooking and freezing saves time and money.
In addition to these frugal habits there is a myriad of ways to save pennies by reusing things in the home, growing vegetables and herbs, and bartering with neigbors or friends. The common ground these particular frugal habits share is that none of them mean doing without or giving up something special.